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Feds create new ombudsperson to keep tabs on corporate behaviour abroad

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OTTAWA — The Liberal government is creating an independent watchdog to enforce responsible conduct of Canadian companies operating abroad.

International Trade Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne is announcing the new position at a news conference today.

The role of the Canadian Ombudsperson for Responsible Enterprise will be to work towards resolving conflicts between local communities and Canadian companies operating abroad.

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The position will focus on several sectors including mining, oil and gas and the garment sector.

It will also have the power to independently investigate and make recommendations in cases involving human rights complaints.

The new position is intended to be a substantive upgrade to the current “corporate responsibility counsellor,” which has been widely criticized as a toothless entity for dealing with misconduct complaints against Canadian companies, mainly in the mining industry.

The Canadian Press

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